Basenji trainers
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  • H

    Does anyone know of any "basenji specific" trainers in Vancouver BC, well I guess thats wishful thinking,how about lower mainland BC (Vancouver and all the nearby cities ). Thanks:)

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  • I'll be watching the responses. We are in Ladner. Kipawa finished his first puppy class, and did really well. However, I found that there were way too many puppies in the class. I will make sure our next class (possibly not where we did the first) will have a definite max number of dogs. We were led to believe by the website that there was going to be a max number of 8, and at our last two classes there were 12 and 14 dogs. In a one hour class, just NOT enough time to get specific work done with you and your dog.

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  • Not sure you are going to find "basenji specific" trainers.

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  • H

    Ok,so maybe "basenji" specific trainers is a huge push, but people with decent experience. I find everyone I run into or talk has had no experience with this breed at all.

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  • Truly I would go with positive trainers, such as clicker folks. Their methods will never try to force your dog and will provide the type of training they will respond to. I don't use the clicker much, but I totally believe in positive training ONLY.

    Clicker: http://www.karenpryoracademy.com/find-a-trainer

    http://www.cappdt.ca/trainers.jsp

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  • V

    The Basenji is the hardest to train of all dog breeds. He learns new commands slower than all other breeds. You will need to be extra patient when Training him

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  • Actually not so much "learns new commands slower" but rather learns those commands he wants to learn. I've found clicker training with lots of treats can get some pretty fast results (Gossy learned to go to mat with just 15 minutes of practice and to do a front sit with just 5 but still does not heal on walks).

    In my experience with various trainers, you do need one that either does effective clicker training and/or has experience with LOTS of breeds. If the trainer has worked primarily with dogs-for-hunting or aussies or other people-oriented breeds, you're going to be frustrated by their technique ("by next week your dog should…").

    Regardless be prepared to spend twice as much time with the class exercises than what others might. But bottom line - treat treat treat.

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  • LOL nope, they are not the hardest dog to train. They are hard to train if you don't do it right. But trust me, they are no harder to train than a Chow. Dogs… like Chows and Basenjis.. who lack that "I WANT TO PLEASE YOU OH PLEASE TELL ME WHAT TO DO" gene, well you have to train SMARTER, not harder. :)

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  • T

    Well I would have to say we have not found them slow to learn. In fact they learn very quickly with positive training, they may just choose not to continue to do the same thing they just learned. You really have to make it interesting or they lose interest.
    I will also say that for years I recommended a trainer in the Portland Oregon area because she owned a basenji and was experienced.
    My sister took her class and was surprised that often the trainer told her, oh you have a basenji you can sit this out they will never learn this. Then when she went to a trainer with no basenji experience they assumed basenjis would learn and treated them as any other. She had much greater success with the person who assumed basenjis could be trained.
    I have friends in New Westminister that have had good success with a trainer, are you looking just for basic puppy classes or specific problems or issues? I can email them today to get the name of the trainer they used.
    Therese

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  • @Therese:

    I have friends in New Westminister that have had good success with a trainer, are you looking just for basic puppy classes or specific problems or issues? I can email them today to get the name of the trainer they used.
    Therese

    Therese, I would be interested in knowing who they use for training. I am kind of 'luke warm' on the highly touted place Kipawa, Darrel and I attended.

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  • When people ask me about training or the smarts of my basenjis (and they often do, usually either at agility trials or therapy visits), I tell them that basenjis are clever. That usually gets the message accross.

    I don't really think they are harder to train than most other dogs, in fact I think they are a blast to work with. I find them quirky and creative. IMO they tend to be harder to motivate and are much more sensitive to their environment than most breeds which can be frustrating to the handler (been there, done that MANY times). But, certainly one can put titles on their basenjis. Digital the brindlewonderkid was my first comeptiton basenji and he has around 30 titles to his name (mostly agility). Not bad for a total novice handler.

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  • H

    I live in New Westminster and would love to know of a trainer, a good trainer, that is out my way. Sounds almost too good to have one in my own back yard. Ive read too much about these dogs being "untrainable" and "too wild/instinctual" its quite irritating. Anything and anyone can be trained, given a correct method and amount of time ( the time part is basically for life, as the training could never be complete, always something to tweak ):D

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  • When I got my first basenji, I didn't know enough about what questions to ask a trainer and went to the local dog training club's classes. They were not fun for either of us and after our first set of classes we pretty much dropped out. When I got my second basenji, I knew better what questions to ask and I looked for a clicker trainer. The classes were better and we got through about 2 sets of classes. When I added my third basenji, I started interviewing trainers before I paid for classes not just looking at their online training philosophies. I got lucky, the second person I talked to really knew her stuff about learning theory and was excited to have a basenji puppy in her class. Even though she was already mid-session she told me to go ahead and come to class because puppies need school and shouldn't sit around at home practicing bad behaviors. Six years later, I am good friends with my dog trainer and have apprenticed under her and now teach my own classes.

    If you are looking for a trainer, hit the trainer directories at APDT, CCPDT, and Truly Dog Friendly and start making calls. Ask about what their training methods are and their experience. My trainer is one of those people who has owned several breeds and appreciates a dog's hardwiring. When I apprenticed with her, she encouraged me to volunteer at our local shelter to better learn about the differences in breeds and training. So look for someone who appreciates and embraces that each breed is different but that they can all learn.

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  • T

    As soon as I get a name back from friends in New Westminister I'll post it for everyone.
    I agree totally with Lisa Voss clicker training and positive training is great with this breed. Most trainers will also let you observe a class so you can see their style as well. That really helps.
    I'll send word soon, promise.
    Therese

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  • First Basenji's

    @hansfingas:

    I live in New Westminster and would love to know of a trainer, a good trainer, that is out my way. Sounds almost too good to have one in my own back yard. Ive read too much about these dogs being "untrainable" and "too wild/instinctual" its quite irritating. Anything and anyone can be trained, given a correct method and amount of time ( the time part is basically for life, as the training could never be complete, always something to tweak ):D

    I write to you now in hopes that you have had success with finding help in training. My recommendation would be to follow Karen Pryor Clicker videos and many 'u-tube' as well. The first few times you try the clicker may feel like riding your first bike, very awkward-until you practice coordinating the timing/treat on the result you want to mark. You know your Basenji the best, so with you clicking away, you just might be the best trainer in your back yard! Dogs are very forgiving. They come into our home and get many different signals everyday without our realization (Like we are talking on the phone, say their given name, hear the words 'come', 'know', down when we really want off….. etc and decide we are not directing any of this to them....you get the picture) So they are use to 'dealing' with our idiosyncrasies...but they move forward! Good Luck! (a trainer in waiting for next Basenji-two weeks and counting)

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  • T

    Hi all,
    Thanks for your patience. My friend from New Westminister was out of town. Here is the name of the trainer and link to her facility.
    Alice Fisher is her name. She owns Dogsmart.
    C:\Users\Owner\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\CD17Q463\DogSmart - Puppy & Dog Training in Vancouver and Vancouver Lower Mainland..htm
    Let me know if the link doesn't work for any reason.

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  • H

    HI there, Im a little confused about the whole "clicker" training idea. Does that mean everywhere you go you take a clicker with you and the dog only responds to the clicker?

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  • H

    second thought, I have 2 A.D.D Basenjis who have become increasingly difficult to walk on leash together. Each one wanting to go every which way that you arent. Wil this clicker training help me with that? I see it being done on youtube with 1 dog, but not 2. Seems they are always competing to be in front of each other. When another dog comes into site, its like we are running the iditarod. Advice on what to try would be greatly appreciated :D

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  • S

    You can use your voice..make a sound and use that instead of the "clicker".

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  • @Therese:

    Hi all,
    She owns Dogsmart.
    C:\Users\Owner\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\CD17Q463\DogSmart - Puppy & Dog Training in Vancouver and Vancouver Lower Mainland..htm
    Let me know if the link doesn't work for any reason.

    LOL that link won't work for anyone as it is a destination on your computer, lol. The "C:" means the C drive on your computer. Here is a link to their page:
    http://www.dogsmart.ca/

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  • @hansfingas:

    HI there, Im a little confused about the whole "clicker" training idea. Does that mean everywhere you go you take a clicker with you and the dog only responds to the clicker?

    http://www.clickerlessons.com/whatis.htm

    What is Clicker Training?

    It is training using almost entirely positive reinforcement - teaching your dog to learn… using no physical compulsion or corrections whatsoever. Sounds a bit unbelievable, but works incredibly well. Instead of yanking dogs around, shoving them into place, giving some praise, and hoping the dog will make the connection, dogs are taught using the scientific methods of classical & operant conditioning. Anyone questioning how reliable a dog taught this way can be should take a trip to Sea World. There, the Orcas, dolphins, etc., are taught using these same methods. After all... you can't slip a choke chain around a whale's neck & give a jerk! And yet, these lovely creatures perform flawlessly for audience after audience. And have a blast doing it. The whole enjoyment feature is what really turned me on to positive training. I love my dogs, and although I want them to be responsive to me I dislike hurting them! With clicker training I don't have to. This training works for every dog, from bold to timid, from tiny to giant. This is the type of training used for most (all?) animals trained for movie & TV work, too.

    The clicker itself is simply a little toy-like device that is used in the initial stages of training any behavior. It provides clear & precise communication between owner & dog and allows you both to concentrate on & enjoy the task at hand. You click at the exact moment the dog is performing whatever it is you want, and since you always follow that click with a tasty treat, the dog will learn to love the sound, and the work to make that sound happen! As part of the training, you teach the dog hand and/or verbal signals for each behavior. As the dog learns these, you phase out the clicker. It has completed its function, which was to communicate to your dog which behavior you desired.

    With positive reinforcement training there is no more forcing a dog to learn. Instead, the dog becomes eager to learn! Very tasty food treats are the primary reinforcers at first because they are easy to use but many, many other reinforcements are used as well - from squeaky toys to playing games. A dog properly trained this way will not be dependent upon food in order to respond.

    Clicker training can be used to teach your dog (or just about any animal) regular pet obedience type behaviors (such as loose-leash walking) as well as more advanced competition, trick or service behaviors. You will love it... and so will your dog!

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